Revenue: 8% rise in number of people and businesses having difficulty paying tax26/04/2012 - 12:14:26
The number of businesses and taxpayers who are having difficulties paying their taxes rose by 8% last year.
The Revenue Commissioners' annual report shows there were 16,000 cases of debt rescheduling in 2011, where people were unable to meet their tax liabilities in the short term.
Phased payment plans have been drawn up to recover the €113m in tax owed.
The figure of 16,000 cases represents an increase of 50% on the same number of businesses and taxpayers facing problems in 2007.
Chairman of the Revenue Commissioners Josephine Feehily praised the work of her staff at the launch of the report today.
"Overall I would say last year was a year of really solid performance in challenging circumstances," she said.
"We can report positive results in virtually all our business areas, good productivity, and some very interesting and innovative projects as well.
"While overall tax and duty receipts were €831m below the Budget target, net tax and duty receipts in 2011 increased by 7.3% to €34.2bn, reversing three years of falling returns to the Exchequer.
"Perhaps more significantly from Revenue's point of view, is the fact that the level of outstanding tax debt stabilised in 2011 and is now beginning to decrease.
"The overall debt reduced from €2.08bn in 2010 to €1.99bn in 2011. The debt available for collection also fell by almost 5.2% to €1.32bn in 2011.
"This is an extremely important performance indicator for us in Revenue and to achieve it, we increased the staff resources deployed on debt collection and recovery by 11.5% in 2011."
Figures also showed that there were 30 court convictions for serious tax and duty evasion in 2011, up from 13 in 2010.
Eight custodial sentences, ranging from seven to 36 months, imposed, with a further 15 custodial sentences suspended.
A total of 1,044,830 litres of illegally laundered fuel were seized and nine fuel-laundering plants were detected.
Some 109.1 million cigarettes and 11,158kg of tobacco, valued at €46m and €4m respectively, were seized.
Drugs with a street value of €24.1m were seized, up from €9.02m last year.
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